Capital Area Private Defender Service

David Gonzalez

ABA Selected Member

Licensed:  11/1999 Partner at Sumpter & Gonzalez

David is a criminal lawyer, who has been Board Certified in Criminal Law since 2007.  He is a graduate of Stanford Law School (J.D., 1999) and Dartmouth College (B.A. in Government & Education, 1995).  David has widely lectured on criminal defense and worked extensively with the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association on their legislative agendas.   
He was selected the ABA’s Outstanding Young Lawyer of the Year as well as having been nominated for the Austin Under 40 award and declared a “Rising Star” by Texas Monthly.  David is a graduate of the National College of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the Gerry Spence’s Trial Lawyer College, and Texas Criminal Trial College.

Kellie Bailey

ABA Selected Ex Officio Member

Licensed:  11/1993
Law Office of Kellie Bailey

Kellie is a graduate of the St. Mary School of Law, 1993 and the University of Texas BA in Psychology, 1990.  Kellie dedicates her practice to criminal defense including a large number of mentally ill defendants.  She previously worked with the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, and is a Texas Bar Fellow and a Texas Monthly Rising Star.  She serves on the ACDLA Board of Directors.

Sidney Williams

CAPDS Board Selected Ex Officio Member
Licensed:  11/2003
The Williams Law Firm

Sidney is a graduate of the University of Texas School of Law, 2003 and the University of Texas BA, 2000.   Sidney was honored as an Endowed Presidential Scholar, a Heaman Sweat Endowed Scholar, and a Thurgood Marshall Endowed Scholar.

Arnold Garcia, Jr.

Public Member

Voting Board Members

Non- Voting Board Members

Novert Morales

ACDLA Selected Ex Officio Member

Licensed:  11/1995
Founding Partner Morales Law Office

Novert earned his bachelor’s degree from Southwest Texas State University and his law degree from Texas Southern University. He has been in private practice since 1995 and is licensed to practice law by the State Bar of Texas.

Novert Morales is a Board Member of the Austin Criminal Defense Lawyers Association and member of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association. He is also a former Director with the Texas Young Lawyer Association and former member of the Bar Leadership Committee of the State Bar of Texas.

He is currently a member of the College of the State Bar and has been awarded “Business Man of the Year” by the Midland Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and is currently an Ambassador with the Greater Austin Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

J. Laverne Morris-Parker

Public Member

J. LaVerne Morris-Parker, a native of Macon, Georgia, graduated from the University of Georgia with a Masters in Public Administration.  She has been a public service employee for over 30 years.

LaVerne currently works as an Employee Relations Coordinator for the City of Austin.  Prior to employment with the City, she worked for the Texas General Land Office as the Strategic Planning Coordinator.

She is a Texas real estate broker and in addition to employment, LaVerne is active in several community and civic organizations where she volunteers and gives back to the community.

Honorable Mike Lynch, Retired

Oversight Committee’s Judicial Selected Member Licensed:  11/1974
​Retired Judge of the 167th District Court
Judge Mike Lynch served in every part of the criminal justice system during his career.  He retired as Senior District Judge in 2012 after 20 years on the bench.  He graduated from Amherst College in 1969 and the University of Texas Law School in 1974.  Judge Lynch practiced criminal defense from 1974 until 1985 when he became an Assistant Attorney General from 1985-1987.  Judge Lynch next served as a Division Chief for the Travis County Attorney from 1987-1988 and an Assistant District Attorney from 1988-1992.  He ended his prosecuting career as Chief of Public Integrity Unit from 1989-1992.  Judge Lynch was the original proponent of a Managed Assigned Counsel program in Travis County.  He first saw the opportunity to improve indigent defense on the bench and has steadfastly advocated for Travis County to adopt the Managed Assigned Counsel model.

Jana Ortega

ACDLA Selected Member

Licensed:  11/2003 Owner Ortega Law

For over 10 years, Ms. Jana Ortega, owner of OrtegaLaw, has focused solely on representing those accused of criminal offenses. After graduation from St. Mary’s School of Law in 2003, Ms. Ortega has provided first class representation on minor and major offenses while maintaining a professional and competitive law firm that delivers outstanding client service.

Jana has served in numerous leadership roles in non-profits including currently serving on the Board of the Austin Criminal Defense Lawyers Association.  

Alan Bennett


ABA Selected Member

Licensed:  11/1987
Partner at Gunter, Bennett, & Anthes

Alan graduated from Baylor School of Law in 1987.  He began his legal career as an assistant County Attorney in Travis County from 1987-1988 and moved to the District Attorney’s Office from 1988-1992.

Alan entered private practice in 1992 focusing exclusively on criminal defense.  He accepted court appointments from 1992-1998.  Alan is a member of ACDLA and TCDLA, serving on ACDLA's Board of Directors 2010-2014 and was Presiding Director in 2012-2013.  Alan has been involved with the Managed Assigned Counsel program development since the very first meeting in 2012.

Betty Blackwell


ACDLA Selected Member Licensed:  11/1980

Law Office of Betty Blackwell

Betty is a criminal law practitioner who is Board Certified in Criminal Law.  She received a J.D. with honors from the University of Texas in 1980.  She served as Chair of the Commission for Lawyer Discipline from 2006-2011, as Presiding Director/President of the Criminal Law Section of the State Bar of Texas, the ACDLA, and the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyer's Association.  She was appointed by Governor Richards to the Texas Punishment Standards Commission that re-wrote the Texas Penal Code, and by Governor Bush to the committee that rewrote the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure. 

She has lectured at the Advanced Criminal Law Seminar for the State Bar of Texas and at the Rusty Duncan Advanced Criminal law seminar for over 10 years. She authored a 3 volume treatise for West Publishing company, along with Judge Michael McCormick, entitled Texas Criminal Forms and Trial Manual. 

She served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Texas, Criminal Defense Clinic and annually oversees the ACDLA's Annual Ethics Seminar.   

Capital Area Private Defender Service BOARD of Director

Our Board of Directors was crafted to provide a balanced and highly experienced team to ensure a diverse and comprehensive approach to indigent defense service delivery.  Our board has more than 156 years of criminal law experience and is comprised of judges, lawyers, and private citizens.  Our voting board consists of seven members.  Two members are selected by ACDLA, two members are selected by ABA, our Oversight Committee selects one retired judge, and two members of our community are selected by our board.  Additionally, our board includes three non-voting members who will advise the board while continuing to represent indigent clients.